It’s time for the annual rug auction and sale in Denver to Benefit the CU Museum of Natural History.
It will happen Saturday, November 5th.
If you are as tired of the election news as I am, you know that the best way to make yourself feel better is to come down to the Denver Post Building, 101 West Colfax, between 10 am and 5 pm and buy a Navajo rug!
Think about it. These are one of the great American art forms, woven for about 400 years by the Navajo people of New Mexico, Utah and Arizona. These are honest, straightforward people who work hard. I mean, really hard. Your appreciate of their work makes their lives possible. It’s a fair trade, you get a beautiful piece of art, and they get to continue creating them while supporting their families.
The number of weavers has dropped dramatically over the years, but the quality you can buy today is amazing! When we started doing this fund raiser, 31 years ago, we knew we would be raising badly needed funds for the CU Museum to restore and preserve textiles. What we didn’t really think about then was that we would be providing the opportunity for hundreds of weavers to continue their work. It has been a great partnership with the Museum and all of their great volunteers!
And every year, we seem to run into a special textile to bring to Denver.
This year, it happened last Friday. Emily Malone, the matriarch of the Spider Rock weavers,
She was going to drive to Durango because she wanted us to take her weaving to the Denver Auction/Sale. My mom and I were driving to Shiprock and Cortez that day and I made arrangements to meet her at McDonald’s in Shiprock. Everyone knows where McDonald’s is!
We all arrived there about the same time and Emily pulled out a beautiful Spider Rock weaving, but when I looked at it, it had snaps, a slit down the center of one side and then Emily put the piece on! I was amazed! I do not believe that I have ever seen something woven quite like this. I must not have been thinking or I would have taken her picture with the Golden Arches in the background, but the blue desert sky works fine.
It is woven with commercially processed single ply yarn and colored with vegetal dyes. It’s a beautiful weaving and she and her daughter, Laramie, even brought a mannequin to display it on! A couple of weeks ago, she entered it at the Northern Navajo Fair and got a second place.
How could this be a second place to anything?” I asked.
“They didn’t judge it as a weaving. They put it in the clothing category and a leather jacket won first!” Emily smiled as she explained.
But she was excited that we wanted to show and sell it at the CU Museum Benefit.
I think her creation is really an accomplishment!
Come by and take a look, it might fit someone you know! Or, you could always put it on the wall and have a gorgeous Spider Rock Weaving!
Saturday, November 5th, schedule of events:
The Silent Auction and Sale begins at 10 am, in the Denver Post Lobby at 101 West Colfax.
From 10 am until 4 pm, I will be giving free evaluations on Navajo pieces that you own and would like to learn more about.
All day long, Navajo Rug restoration expert, Ben Leroux, will be giving free estimates on repair and cleaning of your weavings.
All day long,you can take advantage of our "buy it now" opportunity which allows anyone to purchase any rug that does not have a bid on it at any time during the auction by paying 20 percent over the minimum bid! You can buy your favorite weavings and take them with you at any time during the day.
Every bit of the extra 20% goes directly to the Museum to support their amazing collections.
At 1 pm, I will be giving a talk on Navajo weaving and highlighting some of the weavers and weavings in the auction. There are lots of stories to tell!
At 5 pm, the auction is over and the highest bidder wins,UNLESS you took advantage of our "Buy it Now" option and already have your favorites at home with you.
This is always a fun and interesting day. Even if you are not interested in purchasing a weaving at this time, Emily Malone’s beautiful poncho is incredible and worth seeing.
Come by and say hi!
Thank you for your support of this event for the last 31 years and for following our blog!
Jackson Clark II